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Phuket Gazette Sports: EPL midweek summary

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Phuket Gazette Sports: EPL midweek summary | The Thaiger
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Pressure on City as United steam ahead in title race
Reuters / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: A midweek slip-up has again left Manchester City needing seven points to draw level with title rivals Manchester United ahead of a weekend encounter with an unpredictable Liverpool side capable of inflicting further pain.

A 0-0 stalemate at Queens Park Rangers on Tuesday has left City playing catch-up once again and added extra spice to Sunday’s encounter at the Etihad Stadium.

A defeat and City could find themselves 10 points adrift, deep into the second half of the season when United, who visit Fulham on Saturday, are traditionally strong.

City lacked the killer instinct to break down QPR and on Sunday will face a Liverpool team who have also frequently come up short when looking to deliver a knockout blow.

Capable of weaving pretty passing patterns, the Merseysiders have all too often lacked the mettle for a scrap or had the resolve to dig deep and grind out a result when the chips are down.

Having stumbled out of the FA Cup against third tier Oldham, they showed what they are capable of on their day with an impressive first-half display against Arsenal last night, but again stumbled under pressure and ended up drawing 2-2.

New signing Daniel Sturridge has shown he can work well in tandem with 17-goal striking partner Luis Suarez while the club’s second January acquisition Brazilian playmaker Philippe Coutinho could make an early debut on Sunday.

Arsenal, who showed their own defensive fragility in a comical and error-strewn first half against Liverpool, will face a different challenge at home to the physical and direct Stoke City.

United play Fulham a week after they strolled to a 4-1 victory over the west London club in the FA Cup fourth round.

That match was billed as the return of Dimitar Berbatov to his former club, but the Bulgarian’s contribution amounted to little more than a lackadaisical stroll around his former Old Trafford stomping ground.

United maintained their own title march with a 2-1 win over Southampton thanks to two goals from England striker Wayne Rooney.

Chelsea face a tricky visit to Newcastle on Saturday after their form under interim manager Rafa Benitez again came under the spotlight when they gave away a two-goal lead for the second time in two weeks to draw 2-2 at Reading in midweek.

Tottenham Hotspur’s form has also faltered and they will be hoping to win their first match in four against West Bromwich Albion on Sunday after three successive league draws.

Arsenal hit back to draw with Liverpool
Reuters / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Arsenal hit back from two goals down to draw 2-2 at home to Liverpool in the Premier League yesterday.

Liverpool seemed set for an impressive victory with goals from Luis Suarez and Jordan Henderson giving them a healthy lead with half an hour left but Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott replied in a two-minute burst for the Gunners.

Tottenham Hotspur remained in fourth place but needed a Gareth Bale special to earn them a point at Norwich City after they trailed at halftime.

Everton closed to within a point of Tottenham with a 2-1 home defeat of West Bromwich Albion.

Leaders Manchester United were at home to Southampton in a late kickoff and third-placed Chelsea were in action at Reading.

Newcastle French connection clicks in “massive” Villa win
Reuters / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Newcastle United’s French spending spree paid immediate dividends in their fight against Premier League relegation with a “massive” 2-1 win over fellow strugglers Aston Villa.

Newcastle, plagued by injuries and languishing in 15th place having finished a surprise fifth last season, have signed five French players in the January transfer window.

Assured debuts by midfielder Moussa Sissoko and forward Yoan Gouffran, among 11 Frenchmen in the Newcastle squad, silenced the doubters.

“Welcome to the English league for the French boys. Every one of them put in a great shift,” defender Steven Taylor, who was making his first appearance since November after an injury layoff, told the club’s website (click www.nufc.co.uk).

“It was a massive, massive win. That feels like one of the most important games I’ve ever played in a black and white jersey,” added the 27-year-old after Newcastle pulled four points clear of the drop zone.

Taylor laughed off suggestions that there was a culture and language clash at Newcastle amid reports of club fines for players not speaking in English.

“They (the French players) got up one by one and sang in front of the lads. It’s great and it’s what we need at this football club – that togetherness,” said Taylor who grew up in Newcastle.

“The banter was flying the night before the game and the French lads were in amongst it. Already they’ve been accepted by the boys. They want to come here and fight it out and that second-half performance was what we need.”

Gouffran was impressed by the famous Newcastle away support, numbering over 2,500 at Villa Park.

“They were magnificent, absolutely superb. You just don’t get that sort of support in France,” said the ex-Girondins Bordeaux forward.

Manager Alan Pardew, under pressure having been given an eight-year contract by owner Mike Ashley in September on the back of his success last year, said France midfielder Sissoko had been a great find.

“Sissoko is a class act, trust me. Everything that I thought he might do for this team, he delivered in the first half,” said Pardew after Sissoko provided the assist for Papiss Cisse to score the opener after 19 minutes.

“He ran out of steam in the second half – those French players now know the difference between Ligue 1 and the Premier League.”

Newcastle next face Chelsea in the league on Saturday and play Ukraine’s Metalist Kharkiv in the Europa League last 32 in February.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

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Phuket

Woman arrested for abandoning newborn baby on a bench in Phuket

Caitlin Ashworth

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Woman arrested for abandoning newborn baby on a bench in Phuket | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Siangtai/Newshawk Phuket

Police tracked down and arrested a Burmese woman who allegedly left her newborn baby on a bench in Phuket’s Patong area last week. The mother faces charges of abandoning a baby.

The newborn was left in a reusable shopping bag on a bench behind a Krungthai Bank branch. A woman in the area heard the baby crying and found the newborn in the bag along with a bottle of milk, diapers and clothing. Police reviewed surveillance camera footage shows a woman, police later identified as Ei Ei Phyu, leaving the bag on the bench.

Police say the woman gave birth on September 9 at a local hospital in Surat Thani’s Phun Phin district. Ei Ei allegedly took a van from Surat Thani to Phuket on September 22 and stayed with a friend in Patong. The early the next morning, she allegedly left her baby on the bench before boarding a bus back to Surat Thani.

Burmese workers in the Patong area told police Ei Ei used to work at a local Indian food restaurant before she moved to Surat Thani to work as a rubber tapper. Ei Ei allegedly told police she is not in the position to raise a child.

In earlier reports, police said the baby is healthy and does not appear to have any injuries.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Thailand

Phuket police arrest 6 after finding large amounts of methamphetamine in raid

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Phuket police arrest 6 after finding large amounts of methamphetamine in raid | The Thaiger

Phuket Provincial Police have arrested 6 people after finding large amounts of methamphetamine and other drugs during a raid. One suspect alone allegedly had 7.6 kilograms of crystal meth (ya ice) and over 12,500 methamphetamine pills (ya bah). 29 year old Surasak ‘Bank’ Wijit and 27 year old Panida ‘Mei’ Saeyang were arrested at an apartment car park in Soi Lookkaew, Moo 6, Rassada, in eastern Phuket, after they were found in possession of the drugs.

Police also found 2 mobile phones and a red Honda PCX, registered in Phuket, as evidence. Both suspects have been charged with posessing a Category 1 drug with the intent to sell.

Other suspects arrested at the same time include 36 year old from Chiang Rai, 42 year old Sarawut ‘An’ Srichanon, from Ranong and 31 year old Pornthep ‘Iew’ Thepchampa, who were charged with the same crimes in Chalong after police found more drugs in their possession. 33 year old Kamon ‘Kung’ Sae-ngow, was arrested as well after police found kratom juice and leaves at a house in Rassada. He was taken to Phuket City Police station and was charged with a Category 5 drug possession.

SOURCE:The Phuket News

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Thailand

Phuket Muay Thai fighter is the first Thai national to compete in UFC

The Thaiger

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Phuket Muay Thai fighter is the first Thai national to compete in UFC | The Thaiger

The upcoming Ultimate Fighting Championship Fight Night event in Abu Dhabi will feature Thailand’s only national marking her third fight with the UFC, the world’s largest mixed martial arts competition. 24 year old Loma Lookboonme, from Burirram in northeastern Thailand, will fight in the event on October 3, 2020.

Loma is a Muay Thai fighter who has adapted her MMA skills to fight in the UFC where she currently trains at the Tiger Muay Thai gym in Phuket. Loma qualified for the national team at the age of 19 and has fought in over 12 nations worldwide. She currently trains 6 days a week starting daily at 6:30am with a 3 kilometre run. In the UFC, she will be competing against China’s Angela Lee who is the undisputed champion of the 52 kilogram fist weight category.

Phuket Muay Thai fighter is the first Thai national to compete in UFC | News by The Thaiger

Loma’s parents are former Muay Thai fighters and her 2 sisters currently compete as well. She reportedly started training at 8 years old after being inspired by her father, whom she describes as her “hero.”

Like most Thais in such fighting sports, Muay Thai offers a way to rise out of poverty-and fighting for the UFC can be financially lucrative. But Loma says her only Thai sponsor is the gym where she trains, with the rest of her sponsors being from foreign brands. She says she is trying to get more Thai sponsors but feels that maybe she needs to win the UFC first before Thai brands notice her.

Loma lost her last fight and says her new opponent gives her nothing to lose. She says her goal is to get into the Top 10, but is not sure when it will happen. Loma says for now, it would be good to fight against someone in the Top 10 to help her prepare for her future.

FULL INTERVIEW: Thisrupt.co

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